AMEF's American Outdoor Experience coming to Bristol in '04

from staff reports
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation's (RMEF) American Outdoor Experience will take place on the grounds of Bristol Motor Speedway and Dragway, June 11-13, 2004.
Officials, who Thursday announced the event, expect the RMEF's American Outdoor Experience to be one of the nation's largest events of its kind.
"After a long absence, the southeastern United States once again is home to the majestic elk. Restoring this species is a world-class conservation success, and the RMEF American Outdoor Experience will be a world-class way for all outdoor enthusiasts to celebrate," said J. Dart, RMEF President and CEO.
Transformed into one huge outdoor expo, the RMEF American Outdoor Experience will utilize the entire acreage of Bristol Motor Speedway and Dragway. The event will offer opportunities for the entire family and outdoor enthusiasts to experience nearly every aspect of the outdoor sporting world.
Officials expect event attendance to top 50,000.
"We are very proud to have the opportunity to host the RMEF American Outdoor Experience here at Bristol Motor Speedway and Dragway," said Jeff Byrd, BMS President and General Manager. "Our location marks a geographic center point which we feel will draw a significant number of outdoor enthusiasts to our region."
Those attending will experience first-hand the latest outdoor sporting merchandise, such as shotguns, fishing rods and tackle, bows and arrows, hunting gear, and much more. Interactive displays will include shotgun, rifle and archery ranges, rock-climbing walls, ATV and 4X4 test tracks and hands-on youth conservation learning activities. RMEF's Great Elk Tour, a display of awe-inspiring bull elk, will be on hand. Also on display will be Bass Pro Shop's Legendary Bucks Tour, all promising participants a lively time.
"Outdoor sports have been a big part of my life and now I enjoy them with my grand children. This event celebrates all aspects of the American outdoor experience and it will further the preservation of our outdoor resources," said six-time Winston Cup Champion car owner Richard Childress. A long-time outdoor sportsman, Childress was on hand to help announce the event. "I am especially proud to be involved with the RMEF as I support their goals and mission of preserving wildlife habitat throughout North America. I look forward to this event and am proud to be a part of another class-event at Bristol Motor Speedway. The Bristol area is an excellent choice for the RMEF American Outdoor Experience."
The RMEF's American Outdoor Experience will provide activities suited for the entire family. Composed of a variety of "sporting camps," each one will feature a specific outdoor interest. Included will be Kids', Conservation, Shooting, Archery, ATV, Fishing and Hunting camps, and many more.
Both the novice and the experienced sports enthusiasts can try-out different outdoor sporting products under true-to-life conditions with skilled professionals to coach them through the process. Event participants can purchase these and other products in the event's shopping expo or the Bass Pro Shops mobile retail store.
Over the past several years, elk populations have been re-established in Tennessee, Kentucky, Great Smoky Mountains and elsewhere in the southeast where suitable habitat remains. Elk conservation efforts are continuing today. RMEF, a volunteer-driven, hunter-based organization, partners with state and federal agencies to make these programs successful. The results prove extremely exciting for all who appreciate wildlife and wild country.